How would you characterize God as a Husband? Would you say that He is faithful and loving to His wife, or is He the type of Husband who would just ditch His wife for another woman? I find that when I keep this question in mind, the doctrinal positions of Christianity regarding Israel does not make any sense.
For example, there are many branches of Christianity who believe that the church has replaced Israel. Now let’s think about this.
There is no doubt in the Old Testament that Israel is portrayed as the wife of God. However, when we get to the New Testament, the church is portrayed as the Bride of Christ. Now I was taught growing up in the church I attended that God’s wife is Israel and Christ, the Son’s, wife is the church. Two different wives.
So if the church has replaced Israel, then this means that the Father is in an intimate relationship with His own Son’s wife, which is, in fact, in direct violation of His own laws regarding sexual relationships. God, then, would be a sexual sinner, no different than many people today. Obviously, this doctrine of Replacement Theology cannot be true.
Now in Dispensationalism, the church and Israel are separate, but according to its teachings, Israel has been put on the “back burner” under this present time of grace, and once the church has been raptured out, Israel will be brought back to the forefront and again under a time of law, meaning that Israel never gets to experience the grace of God.
1. If Israel is God’s wife and the church is Christ’s wife, then why is it necessary for Israel to be put on the “back burner”? Why can’t both wives be getting the focus of their respective husbands equally?
2. Isn’t any doctrine that denies Israel the grace of God anti-semitic at its core?
Therefore, based on these two issues, I do not believe that Dispensationalism is correct either.
What if both of these positions are wrong. What if there is only ONE BRIDE – A BRIDE that God personally named, ISRAEL. What if “the church” is just another name for redeemed and restored Israel?
If that is the case, then doesn’t it mean that every believer has the same calling, obligations, and responsibilities of ISRAEL to walk in obedience to God’s commandments?
If this is the case, then we see in the New Testament, the playing out of the story of Hosea and Gomer, who gave his all to redeem his wife out of slavery and back to himself. Isn’t this a perfect picture of what we call “the gospel”?
And doesn’t this continue to show God for the type of Husband that He is throughout the Scriptures, a loving, self-sacrificing and caring Husband? Isn’t this the picture of God we should be presenting in our churches — not the ones we present by implication through these other doctrines?
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